Wednesday, November 14, 2007

What's cookin' at MoCA Con

The fall in Austin is sweet and so are all the stories rolling out of the first MoCA conference here. Comcast and Cox suggest they will roll out MoCA networking in a small way starting late next year, and chip makers agree that in the fragmented and confusing world of home networks, that's good news.

But off on the Texas horizon are a few new wrinkles. It seems everyone would like to see a single home network for all copper lines. Startup Gigle Semiconductor (Edinburgh, Scotland) hopes to offer just that sometime in 2008. Founded by execs from DS2 and STM, the company claims it will offer competitive, integrated silicon with two channels—one for powerline and the other handling any copper link (telephone lines, powerline, coax or a combo of any two) at PHY rates up to a Gbit/s. We shall see.

Over in Europe the ITU has been trying to hammer out a standard for a home net that could run on any copper media. Called g.hn, it has attracted participation from a broad group including Alcatel, Broadcom, BT, Gigle, Intel, Intellon, Panasonic, TI and Siemens. I'm looking for more details on this effort (what is the target data rate, QoS and status of the spec) if anyone can chime in with info.

One last hot tidbit: Silicon Image, the company known for its HDMI silicon, has kicked off some sort of home networking initiative of its own. I don't have any details about it but I'm hungry to learn more. Post a comment or drop me a note at rbmerrit@cmp.com

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